Excerpt: New York City detective Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) takes the law into his own hands when he shoots an exonerated rapist. He's kicked off the force but spared a jail sentence by the city's mayor, Nick Hostetler (Russell Crowe), who feels he can one day call upon Taggart for his own means. Seven years later, Billy is working as a private investigator and having trouble making money when the mayor calls in his marker, hiring Billy to investigate his wife's indiscretions.
Excerpt: Broken City seems like such an old movie. Its male characters speak in old-movie tough guy-ese; its female characters are largely undeveloped, existing mainly as props. Although it deals with corruption and scandal in a movie-version of New York City, it completely sidesteps anything remotely resembling how a scandal in New York City would play out: no headlines, no paparazzi, no advanced technology of any kind; in fact, a key moment involves a VHS tape!
Excerpt: A decade ago, two of my least favorite actors were Mark Wahlberg and Russell Crowe. Why, you ask? I don’t know, really. I guess I got the image that they were kind of jerks in real life, so therefore I really didn’t seem to care for their films. Yes, I watched them but I was kind of like “Oh, Russell Crowe, he’s an ass.
Conclusion: If I had to describe Broken City in a word it would be "generic." There's little to distinguish this forgettable film-noir knockoff from a thousand other political and crime thrillers. Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg bring some class to a tale of political corruption and revenge, but Director Allen Hughes is saddled with a weak script. Logic gaps and irrelevant plot detours abound, but Broken City is still entertaining enough for me to suggest that you .
Conclusion: 'Broken City' had potential. Perhaps if it had focused more on making a dark and dreary private eye movie instead of resorting to the same old political thriller tricks we're all used to, it would've been something worth spending time with. As it is, it provides a distraction for a couple of hours and that's about it. The audio and video are solid. I can only recommend a rental here.
Excerpt: Four billion dollars are set to funnel into the pockets of a financially sinking New York, a property deal with seeds in Wall Street and the fraudulent mayor who commissioned the fix for the city’s woes. In the midst of a shady mayoral campaign, in steps disgraced detective Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg), hired to pick apart the dealing’s of the mayor’s cheating wife.
Summary: Midway through Broken City , one character incredulously remarks, "Private eyes still exist?" A holdout from the times before no-fault divorce laws—when evidence of infidelity was demanded in court—the gumshoe-for-hire profession does seem old-fashioned and mostly unnecessary now. You could describe Broken City the same way: old-fashioned and mostly unnecessary.
Excerpt: Broken City has extremely high aspirations for itself. It desperately wants to be one of those smart, fast-paced thrillers that leads normally sane people to stay up late loudly arguing over its ending, but the final product isn't that engaging, surprising or even thought-provoking. If there are heated discussions about any of it, they'll likely include theories about why the film isn’t better. Honestly, that sucks.
Excerpt: New York City police officer Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) shoots a man on the street. Thing is, the guy is a rapist-murderer, who was let go on a technicality. Though Taggart’s explanation is hard to swallow, a judge dismisses the charges against him. Politically savvy Mayor Hostetler (Russell Crowe) has intervened and he lets Billy know that Police Commissioner Carl Fairbanks (Jeffrey Wright) has brought him further evidence strongly showing his guilt that was withheld...
Excerpt: Brian Tucker’s script for Broken City made the prestigious “Black List” of best unproduced screenplays in 2008. At its best, though, the film strains heroically to achieve its Chinatown -level ambition and transcend its hackneyed elements: an alcoholic, disgraced cop with a tragic past; a powerful politician with a secret he will go to great lengths to protect; an adulterous trophy wife; a high-stakes land deal with enormous ramifications for an upcoming mayoral...